The Importance of Good Stress Management for Teens

The Importance of Good Stress Management for Teens

April marks National Stress Awareness Month, an observance that shines a light on the pervasive problem of stress in our lives — and there’s no denying that Americans are more stressed than ever. Recognized since 1992, this observance encourages us to increase public awareness about both the causes of our modern stress epidemic and ways to manage the effects. 

Why Stress Management Is Especially Important for Teens

Unhealthy stress levels can have especially damaging impacts on vulnerable groups like teens, even under normal conditions. To begin with, the human brain is still developing during adolescence, and is not fully formed until the mid to late twenties. The prefrontal cortex in particular — which is responsible for decision-making, planning, and self-control — is still growing and maturing. This means that teens may struggle to practice healthy coping mechanisms in ways adults may not.

In addition, the teenage years are a critical period for determining future life outcomes​​​​. Teens are under enormous pressure to perform well academically so they can graduate high school and get into the right college, or choose a career that doesn’t require a college degree. They also experience higher levels of peer pressure than many adults. In addition, teens typically don’t get enough sleep to function well, and many don’t receive the support and resources they need at home.

Add to all of this pandemic-related family deaths, learning gaps, and financial instability — combined with high levels of violence in the US as well as deep social and political unrest — and you have the perfect recipe for poor mental health in an already fragile demographic.

The Dangers of Poor Stress Management in Teens

Inadequate stress reduction and management during adolescence can have profound impacts. Chronic stress can lead to a multitude of problems, including:

• Academic difficulties

• Physical health problems like high blood pressure, a weakened immune system, obesity, and heart disease

• Mental health disorders, such as anxiety and depression

• Substance abuse

• Violence against others

• Self-harm or even suicide

              Strategies for Healthy Stress Management in Teens

              To foster healthier stress management in teenagers, it’s essential to empathize with the array of stressors they face and facilitate healthy stress-relieving outlets. It’s also crucial for parents and teachers to equip teens with effective coping strategies and self-care practices, such as:

              • Engaging in regular exercise and physical activity

              • Increasing the amount and quality of sleep they get

              Expressing their feelings and discussing their stressors with peers and adults

              • Learning how to prioritize tasks and manage time more effectively

              • Exploring relaxation techniques

                      Help Teens Manage Stress Better With ReGroup Foundation

                      ReGroup Foundation is a non-profit that helps pre-teens, teens, and their families anonymously share and benefit from mental health success stories. Too often, the best resources and practices in teen mental health care remain under the radar. 

                      We want all families to benefit from the triumphs of those who have “been there, done that” where harmful stress levels and other issues are concerned. We make this possible by collecting family reviews of local mental health caregivers and facilities as well as personal strategies for helping teens recover from wellness challenges.

                      In only 15 minutes, you can begin making a world of difference in the lives of other teens and their families — just by anonymously sharing your successes. Register today and start sharing your reviews and mental health insights!

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